Tag Archives: Iran

Subject of May 3 Docunight screening is the ‘greatest party on earth’

promotional graphic for Docunight: Iran via Documentaries monthly film screening

No expense was spared when the Shah of Iran spent the entire state budget, more than $600 million, on a party to celebrate 2,500 years of the Persian monarchy. The latest Docunight film, directed by Hassan Amini, suggests that the extravagant, five-day event would change world history, crystallizing opposition to the Shah’s regime and sparking revolution.

“Decadence and Downfall – The Shah of Iran’s Ultimate Party,” the May selection for the “Docunight: Iran via Documentaries” series, will be shown at 7 p.m. on May 3 in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park campus and at Mont Alto campus in the Mont Alto Campus Library. Co-sponsored by the Iranian Student Association and Penn State University Libraries, Docunight events are free and open to the public.

Released overseas in 2016 and aired by the British Broadcasting Corporation, “Decadence and Downfall,” includes footage from the processions and party held in the constructed oasis of pink silk tents at Persepolis. As royal guests and dignitaries dined at a five-course banquet with wine chilled by car-sized blocks of ice brought in by helicopter, resentment was building among the Iranian people.

Amini’s documentary includes photos and interviews with contributors who planned various aspects of the lavish event. He adds context through commentary by the Shah from interviews, the stories of an arrested student leader and the struggles of a nation and people forgotten.

Downloadable PDF promotional posters (University Park and Mont Alto) for this event are available to print or share with colleagues and organizations. For more information on this event, or for questions about accommodations or the physical access provided, contact Mark Mattson, global partnerships and outreach librarian, at 814-863-2480 or mam1196@psu.edu in advance of the event.


‘Docunight’ features films with connections to Iran

promotional graphic for "Sohrab, A Journey" documentary about Iranian filmmaker Sohrab Shahid SalessDocunight, co-sponsored by the Penn State University Libraries and the Iranian Student Association, will present monthly documentary films about, around, or in Iran, or made by Iranians, the first Wednesday of every month in 2017. Screenings take place across several cities in North America.

At 7 p.m. on Wednesday, March 1, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library on the University Park campus, Docunight will feature “Sohrab, A Journey,” (2016), about filmmaker Sohrab Shahid Saless. Returning to Iran after studying cinema and living abroad, Saless makes a daring choice for his career path and becomes a pioneer in Iranian cinema. His features “A Simple Event” and “Still Life” are remembered today as the most important and most influential first examples of the formation of Iranian modern cinema. “Sohrab, A Journey,” directed by Omid Abdollahi, is in Persian with English subtitles.